Jesuit missionary; b. Mannheim, Germany, July 31, 1725; d. date unknown. He entered the Society of Jesus on Oct. 21, 1742. In 1754 he received permission to go to the New World as a missionary. Late that year he arrived in Cádiz, where he waited until Dec. 25, 1755, before sailing for New Spain. He arrived in Veracruz on March 19, 1756 and after a few months in Mexico City was sent to the missions of Sonora. In late 1756 he was assigned to the mission of Atí among the Pima natives. For reasons of health he was transferred to Cucurpe among the Eudebes; he worked there until the expulsion of the Jesuits from the Spanish dominions in 1767. A prolonged journey under guard brought him and his companions back to Cádiz on July 12, 1769. Pfefferkorn, with several other Sonoran missionaries, was held prisoner in Spain because their knowledge of Spain's outlying possessions was considered potentially dangerous. He returned to his homeland in 1777 and spent his last years writing Bechreibung der Landschaft Sonora samt andern merkwerdigen Nachtrichten von den inneren Theilen Neu Spaniens und Reise aus Amerika bis in Deutschland (2 v., Koln am Rheine, 1794–95). A projected third volume of this work was never published.
Bibliography: i. pfeffekorn, Sonora: A Description of the Province, tr. t. e. treutlein (Albuquerque 1949).
[f. b. warren]